Designer beats the odds
Jarrce Sutton is a mass communication major with an emphasis in public relations and advertising. A Miami native, Sutton is hopping to hit it big in the world of clothing design. Getting to college, however, he says was easy. His mother died before he was 3 years old and his father was incarcerated around the same time. Here is his edited "First Person Singular Story." "Growing up was the toughest thing for me. I was in and out of foster care homes three consecutive times.... After my biological mother passed away I've been lost mentally wise and empty inside.
Before my father entered the prison system he gave me to his sister-my aunt--and told her "take care of my shorty until I get out." My father's sister Bonnie became my mother. His other sisters Pamberly and Sonja also helped in my upbringing. as did a cousin named Nicki. They did a tremendous job and I can't thank them enough. They made sure I kept my head in the books, was respectful, and always had faith in God.... One day I was riding in the car with a relative heading to Atlanta and she asked me, "Why don't you start a children foundation or a clothing line?" The light bulb lit up after she
mentioned clothing line. I couldn't wait to get back to Miami to come up
with a name for my brand, figuring out who's my target audience, what type of clothes should I sell, just thinking long term in the process. Finally, I reached home that weekend and rushed straight to my room and found a royal blue notebook and start listing different but simple names for my clothing line. I didn't want the name to be to complex. I wanted it to be simple and eye catching. I had read a lot of books about Steve Jobs and Apple. His enthusiasm, perseverance, and ambitious toward his company drove me to be self-motivated for my brand. After staying up all night going through the list of names for my brand I finally came up with one. ILL ALLEY, "ill" signifying sick (otherwise known as awesome), and "alley" signifying the backway of a building, but in my term, alley is a store. So, when you put it all together it means consumers walking through my store experiencing ill or sick clothing. * I researched the brand to make sure no one else had this particular name. Soon after I got my trademark and started thinking about what type of clothing I wanted to sell to consumers. I narrowed it to urban wear.
This past summer I made two hot bathing suits for the females and the customers went crazy. You can check out my Instagram page @illalley and my personal page @SuaveJersey, also my website Www.illalley.com. Meanwhile, life has a way of knocking you down when you are riding high. I started my junior year this semester. One morning while sitting in the Performing Arts Center waiting to get cleared, I got a phone call from home. Pamberly, who had been both my aunt and my sister, had passed from cancer Shocked, in disbelief, empty, robbed of happiness, and lost. That's how I was feeling inside after receiving the news about the woman who helped raised me. She was the one who taught me how to tie my shoes, the one who told me to be respectful wherever I go, and the one who told me to have faith and God will do the rest. Here's what I say to those who are going through adversity and have a dream in life: Don't give up. Keep striving because there is always someone out there that is looking at your work ethics. ... Whatever you do in the dark will come to light. Let your adversities push you and motivate you in life. *
("Ill" in the vernacular of millennials translate to awesome." )